Volume 5, No. 11-12, November-December 2004


Indian Parliamentary Pitiable Predicament

Dr. Gupta


Manmohan Singh has dissolved all the consultative committees of the Planning Commission. Apparently some economists refused to serve on a panel which had members drawn from the World Bank and other foreign agencies. The P.M. in the power game side-stepped the ‘leftists’ making the CPM etal swallow the bitter pill and stopped any commotion. The parliamentary left claimed to have put Mr. Montek Singh Ahluwalia, the deputy chairman of the Planning Commission – "a World Bank man", according to the ex-CM of West Bengal – who, of course never desisted from rubbing shoulders with World Bank functionaries during his tenure as the CM under severe pressure. If the Congress is critically dependent on the CPI(M), the ‘left’ too has compulsions to continue with its support. Mr. Jyoti Basu has rightly and shamelessly said "We are dependent on the Congress(I) and Congress(I) is also depend on us". What may be the grumbling of the CPI(M) and its ‘left’ allies, they cannot afford to let the UPA fall. The much touted argument – the like of which polluted and killed the left in the ‘left’ in the past – has been propagated for public consumption that withdrawal of support to the Congress government shall enable the BJP romp home to power once again. The entire vainglorious attempt and full-blown cries of the CPI(M) and its allies against the presence of the World Bank and other foreign institutions are clearly and simply bogus and hackneyed enactments of the same old scene in the parliamentary drama. The Telegraph editorially poo-phooed the CPI(M) and is allies’ hypocrisy with such acerbic comments "To its own constituency, however, small that might be outside West Bengal, the left has to show that it does not accept such policies" [3rd October, 2004] The baggage of left image needs to be refurbished time and again by hitting the home constituencies that the ‘left’ shall not allow the Centre to toe the World Bank diktats. The public posturings and pronouncements are mere eyewash. Jyoti Basu blandly stated on the Congress(I) – CPI(M) led ‘left’ bonhomie "…. Though we have opposed the party tooth and nail for 45 years, there is no denying that we are today depending on each other for survival" [The Telegraph, 4th October, 2004]

The idli-chutney break-fast meeting with the CPI(M) and its allies after the dissolusion of some advisory committees was held to soothe the confused and unexpressively hurt feelings of the spineless ‘left’ leadership. Manmohan Singh said over the breakfast delicacies, that he was open to providing the ‘Left’ parties an access to papers and other resource material as a part of policy making regarding "not just economic and finance but security, foreign policy, education, health, rural development, etc." [The Telegraph 3rd October, 2004]. After the angry campaign by the ‘Left’ against the inclusion of 14 experts from global agencies including the World Bank, the West Bengal Left Front Government’s advisor to crucial policy matters, the ‘Left’ leaders only swallowed the bitter pill and decided to cry but not to bite, the bottom line being not to destabilize the beloved UPA Government. Why not the CPI(M) led ‘left’ and Congress(I) will paper over their minor differences? Why not Monmohan Singh will roll the red carpet to the spineless parliamentary left? Now the World Bank or such bodies can not be CPI(M)’s enemies in principle, leave aside minor policy matters. The much projected More Advanced Left Front in West Bengal has no qualms in according a red carpet welcome to the World Bank, Asian Development Bank, numerous organizations like Mckinsey to loot West Bengal by allowing the wheels of so-called globalisation, liberalization and what not. Now the CPI(M) and its ‘left’ allies have discovered an ally in the Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, under whose tenure the liberation policy dictated by the US-led organizations was initiated in the early 1990s. In the CPI mouthpiece New Age its general secretary A.B.Bardhan accused Montek Singh Ahluwalia and some others but gave a clean chit to Manmohan Singh arguing "It is good that the Prime Minister often reminds his colleagues that it is a coalition government." [Quoted in The Telegraph, 9th October, 2004]. What a ridiculous drama! Once again we quote from the Telegraph (3rd Ocotober, 20040) editorial

The Buddhadeb-Yechury Lap-dogs

"These shows of protest are important for the left for through them they speak to their constituency and demonstrate that left policies have not changed. The left has changed, and changed radically – Mr. Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee and his policies in West Bengal are examples of change – but it has to show its followers that it hasn’t. It is not easy to do an ideological turnaround while pretending that it isn’t doing one. …" . The latest addition to this funny game of sloganeering against privatization and such policies is the West Bengal ‘Left’ government’s move towards privatizing a premier state unit (KMWSS) for manufacturing and distribution of water. The beneficiary is JASCO, a unit of Tata Steel. [Ananda Bazar Partika, 9th October, 04]

The rank hypocrisy of the ‘Left’ is all too evident in its sounding left phrases interspersed with dampeners. On 28 October they advised the Central Government not to send Indian officials for Iraq polls scheduled for the early next year to be presided over by the US occupation army. The advice was simultaneously soaked with a rider that "they had no objection if Iraqi personnel were trained for the task in India" [The Hindu, New Delhi, October 29, 2004]. This at once proves that the unprincipled ‘Left’ parties don’t have any objection to the stage-managed upcoming fake election in Iraq. The training of Iraqi stooges in India is nothing wrong but as mock-opposition demands some left verbiage and demonstration they oppose Indian personnel’s sojourn for the same purpose in Iraq.

On the very same day, West Bengal’s chief Minister Buddhadeb told the CII gathering in New Delhi, the second time in less than two months, that his party, the CPI(M), was not going to bring down the UPA government and will "even reconcile with the economic policies." Bhattacharjee made it clear that "Maximum, we shall agree to disagree". He also enthralled the audience of top industrialists saying "We have even got Mckinsey to study the possibility of industrially exploiting the agricultural sector." Without even a blink Bhattacharjee grabbed the mike and said "I know what you are going to ask. Why this apparent divergence of views between the Centre and at the state level ? I suggest you don’t take it seriously." This hypocrytical scum then directly attacked the militant workers of Bengal with such naked statements : "We have made serious policy mistakes in the past with regard to private capital and with regard to the trade union movement. We are taking corrective measures. We sincerely request you to come and invest in the state." [The Indian Express, New Delhi, October 30, 2004] What venomous utterances of the Bengali babu Marxist ! Somersaulting, double-talk, barking without any bite, being true to the grain of parliamentarism are all the hall marks of the ‘Left’ props of the Congress government and the rule of the exploiting classes. Now those ‘Marxist’ left parties have been so mortgaged to those classes dependent on the imperialists that they rather now appear like cheaply paid chamchas before the common people. It is no coincidence that on the same day Finance Minister Chidambaram clearly told the Mumbai business circles that "Foreign direct investment is here to stay and it’s time for Indians to go global" [The Indian Express, Ibid]. The Congress(I) and the industrialists know it too well that the ‘Left’ cries against FDI are simple jokes in the theatre of politics embedded in grabbing the spoils of power. It was not surprising that after the meeting with the Union Minister Mani Shankar Aiyar on the same day, the CPI(M) PB member Yechury scaled down his June position and agreed to a hike in petrol and diesel prices. One remembers that in the last June the ‘Left’ deceived the people through a countrywide agitation against a hike. At that movement they felt the compulsion to show off the protest image soon after the elections. The Congress(I) also was not in a hurry then to dump publicly all its electoral promises. Now both the Congress(I) and the CPI(M) led ‘Left’ are in the same boat. So after some months of barking, obviously not biting, the CPI(M) leader Yechury satisfied himself with such a tame comment: "We understand the government is under tremendous pressure." [The Indian Express, Ibid]

This is parliamentarism which can go to any extent, from hobnobbing with the ruling classes, saving the exploitative state from attacks by revolutionaries to policing/spying activities. Expose it, fight it to establish revolutionary Marxism in India.

The direct interference of the USA and the ‘left’

The granade attack on a recent Dhaka rally of pro-India former Bangladesh PM Sheikah Hasina, which according to the disclosure in the Dhaka’s New Age daily of a judicial probe blaming a "foreign hand" obviously i.e. India’s spy agency RAW [The Telegraph 4th Ocotober, 2004] This also prompted the intervention of the US Federal Bureau of Investigation and Interpol to help Bangladesh in the investigation [Ibid]. The game has assumed a high-pitched claim and counter claim with India interminably sending forth savloes to Pakistan and now Bangladesh for all bomb blasts and even nationality movements and the latter targeting India for sabotages and destabilizing activities. The recent blasts in the North East, particularly in Assam prompted India to put a suspicious glare on Bangladesh. Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi jumped a step further to cry that "The roots are in Bangladesh and Mayanmar. These roots have to be uprooted." Close on the heels of North-east of India, a massive car bombing killed atleast 40 in Multan, Pakistan on 7th October, 2004. Such blasts, killing innocent civilians in India or Pakistan, generally have the long hand of spying agency of this or that country, which have now been operating as part of US imperialism and its spying agency the FBI’s so-called war against terrorism. The term ‘terrorism has now been redefined by US imperialism to target forces against it and also has been conveniently tagged on certain forces nurtured and armed by them till the other day.

Closer home, U.S. defined terrorism has not only found takers in the BJP, Telugu Desam, Congress(I) but in also the CPI(M) and its ‘left’ allies. With the serial blasts in Assam and Nagaland all sat up to join the chorus, the spearhead of the attack being the anti state nationality movements and the anti-imperialist, anti-feudal movements led by the CPI(Maoist). The role of US imperialism in South Asia has now been more pronounced and are more directly interfering. Some years back the criminal BJP led Government allowed the notorious FBI of the US to officially operate from Indian soil for surveillance and policing activities. The CPI(M) and its allies then screamed a mock scream. Soon after, when a drama of attack on policemen guarding a US controlled building in Kolkata was staged, the "Left" Front in West Bengal not only grew nervously supine before US functionaries; Writers Building, the government headquarters, witnessed the CPI(M) CM clothed with shame outstretching his hand to the US ambassador for a tete-a-tete to fight ‘terrorism’. Now with the North-East blasts the US ambassador in India has gone many paces ahead of the past by officially offering the Chief Minister of Assam the clearly interventionist "service" " to track down terrorists". The Home Minister of India Mr. Shivraj Patil clarified "that the ambassador offer was in keeping with the bilateral cooperation agreement on countering terrorism. The US ambassador, Mr. David C.Mulford, was acting in accordance with the spirit and letter of the argument".[The Telegraph, 8th October, 2004]

The Home Minister’s clarification in fact helps tumble down the skeletons from the cupboard extolling the so-called sovereign edifice of the Indian state. Patil makes it known to the mock-heroic CPI(M) like ‘left’ protesters that the bilateral cooperation between the US and India means joint battle against ‘terrorism’. – the US perceived threat. The opinions of a pro-US daily as well as of the native allies run thus: "The US administration has articulated a profound concern about the growth of terrorism across the world. It also has more sophisticated instruments to check terrorism than is available in India. The offer to help in the North-East grows out of this concern." How come the CPI(M), CPI, etc. oppose this "great’’ role of US imperialism in its "holy war" against ‘terrorism’ when they too blare out the some battle cry? The US and the Indian government have sent several consignment of sophisticated fire-arms to Nepal to eliminate the Maoist communists fighting for the elimination of feudal and imperialist interests. All such efforts are meant for the US international strategy against so-called terrorism. Has not the Indian parliamentary left been consistently deaf and blind to such US-India joint ventures against such efforts at crushing the anti-imperialist and democratic forces? No, Never, the ‘left’ prove themselves as a laughing stock or clowns to the masses as well as to their enemies.




Home  |  Current Issue  |  Archives  |  Revolutionary Publications  |  Links  |  Subscription

 Next Issue  >>